Sample Sociology Essay on The Cult of Domesticity

The Cult of Domesticity

The cult of domesticity is what defined true womanhood in America in the nineteenth century. A woman’s life revolved around the home. A woman was supposed to be submissive, inferior, and not be seen in public. This was highly influenced by factors like religion and the media. Being religious was a woman’s highest quality, this acted as the source of her strength and patience among other virtues. Women were considered as being naturally religious. In addition, the church would not take women away from their homes since the church emphasized home values. The church was the most acceptable place for women. Men represented the contrary with the perception that women were destined to salvage them by being good homemakers; who comfort and encourage their men when necessary.

Outside religion, true womanhood was shaped by the media. Women read magazines to diversify their knowledge. This was despite the education institution being purely dominated by men. Women only got partial education, as complete education would disrupt them from practicing their housewifery skills. Some of the housewifery skills like nursing took a lot of time and energy so that no time was left for education thus serving as a reason to keep women at home.

Other than education influencing the cult of true womanhood, this would be passed from mother to daughter. Women who were already socialized into being homemakers and housewives passed that to the next generation. As mothers passed on this skill to the next generation, a social institutions such as the churches affirmed it.

As this happened, social changes were inevitable with the coming of civilization. Women slowly began to be part of the men-dominated domains such as politics and employment spheres. Though we may not have an equal representation, the progress is worth noting.